North County Outlook - Community newspaper serving Marysville, Arlington, Tulalip, Smokey Point, Lakewood

Spring cleaning tips for your barbecue


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It's always a good idea to clean your barbecue each spring.

The weather is heating up and no matter whether you grill year-round or put the grill away for the winter, it's always a good idea to clean it thoroughly once or twice a year.

Chad Wolfe, owner of Bry's in Marysville, said that if you're concerned about grill longevity, wood pellet grills are the way to go.

"People get into this cycle of buying a new one and throwing it away a couple years later," he said, but wood pellet grills are typically built to last 10 to 15 years.

The grilling experts at Broil King offer some helpful advice to get your grill ready for the season.

You will need:

• Sturdy bristle brush

• Grill cleaner

• Toothpicks

• Soap and water

• Venturi brush

Step 1

Remove all the cooking grids, grates and burners and use a sturdy bristle brush to remove the buildup of grease on the inside of the oven. Using a grill cleaner, scrub the inside and outside of the oven and then rinse with water. Wolfe said that oven cleaners like "Oven Off" can be used to clean the grill this way.

"Basically clean it like you would an oven at home," he said. Non-chemical cleaners are also available that can be used to clean off the grill, he said.

Step 2

Inspect the burners, making sure there are no holes rusted through any of the components. If there are, it's time for a replacement. Clean out any clogged burner ports using a toothpick, being careful not to damage the ports. Check all igniter contacts to ensure they are not corroded or loose and remove any debris from the electrode. Next, clean out the burner venturi tubes using a venturi brush. It's very important to keep these tubes clean. Spiders love to make nests in these tubes, creating blockages that can cause serious damage.

Step 3

Examine the heat medium. If you have a heat plate, remove any grease buildup and make sure there are no holes rusted through. If you have briquettes make sure they aren't crumbling and the pores aren't clogged with grease.

Step 4

Check the cooking grids and make sure no welds are broken and brush off any stuck-on residue. If you have cast iron cooking grids, season them with oil to help keep food from sticking and help prevent rust.

Step 5

Inspect the gas hose to make sure there aren't any cracks or leaks. This can easily be done by preparing a soapy solution and applying it to the connections at the tank and valve. Turn the tank on slowly and watch for bubbles to form, which indicates that there is a leak. Try tightening the connections and re-test. If persistent leaking or blistering is detected, stop using your grill and replace the gas assembly.

Finally, check the condition of your control knobs, thermometer, and handles. Replacing small items like this can refresh your grill and make it look new again.


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